A domestic violence restraining order is issued when the person against whom you are taking the order are:
Married to you or was formerly married to you,
Dating you or was dating you,
Engaged or was engaged to be married to you,
A close relative such as a child, sibling, parent, in-law, or grandparent.
If any of the above mentioned physically hurt you, harass you or issue verbal threats, you can file for a domestic violence restraining order. Acts of abuse such as throwing things, following, sexual assault, destroying your property, stealing your property, intimidation and breaking into your home or place of work, can also serve as grounds for a restraining order.
If you are in grave danger, you must first get an emergency protective order through a law enforcement officer.
Types of Domestic Violence Restraining Orders
Emergency Protective Order (EPO)
An EPO is a type of restraining order that only law enforcement can ask for by calling a judge. Judges are available to issue EPOs 24 hours a day. So, a police officer that answers a domestic violence call can ask a judge for an emergency protective order at any time of the day or night.
Temporary Restraining Order (TRO)
When you go to court to ask for a domestic violence restraining order, you fill out paperwork where you tell the judge everything that has happened and why you need a restraining order. If the judge believes you need protection, he or she will give you a temporary restraining order.
Permanent Restraining Order
When you go to court for the hearing that was scheduled for your TRO, the judge may issue a “permanent” restraining order. They are not really “permanent” because they usually last up to 5 years.
Civil Harassment Restraining Orders
A civil harassment restraining order is a court order that helps protect people from violence, stalking, serious harassment, or threats of violence. You can ask for a civil harassment restraining order if:
A person has abused (or threatened to abuse), sexually assaulted, stalked, or seriously harassed you, and
You are scared or seriously annoyed or harassed.
Generally, for civil harassment restraining orders, the person you want to restrain is not:
Your spouse/partner or former spouse/partner,
Someone you dated at any point, or
A close relative (parent, child, brother, sister, grandmother, grandfather, in-law).
If you have a close relationship like one of these, consider whether a domestic violence restraining order is best for your situation.
In a civil harassment restraining order, you can ask to restrain:
A family member more than 2 degrees removed, like an aunt or uncle, a niece or nephew, cousins, and more distant relatives, or
Other people you are not closely related to.
Restraining Order Plans
Domestic Violence Restraining Order w/ Shared Minor Children
Domestic Violence Restraining Order
Civil Harassment Restraining Order
Response to Domestic Violence Restraining Order
Response to Civil Harassment Restraining Order
Effect of a restraining order on the restrained person
For the person to be restrained, the consequences of having a court order against him or her can be very severe.
He or she will not be able to go to certain places or to do certain things.
He or she might have to move out of his or her home.
It may affect his or her ability to see his or her children.
He or she will generally not be able to own a gun. (He or she will have to turn in, sell or store any firearms he or she has, and will not be able to buy a gun while the restraining order is in effect.)
The restraining order may affect his or her immigration status. If you are worried about this, talk to an immigration lawyer to find out if you will be affected.
If the person to be restrained violates the restraining order, he or she may go to jail, or pay a fine, or both.
Legal Document Assistants are not attorneys. Legal Document Assistants can not provide legal advice. Legal Document Assistants can only prepare documents at the client's direction. If you need legal advice or representation in court we can refer you to a cooperating attorney, within our network.